Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Childhood Art

Several years ago my Sister had gone through some old photos and stuff that our parents had and gave my brothers and me a package. When I opened mine, I found some art that I had done as a child. I had forgotten that my Mom had saved anything that I had done back then. I have stuff from high school and college but thought everything was lost from my childhood. Maybe she knew that someday it would be one more thing I needed for inspiration to move forward with my art. She knew I had the potential to be a great artist and that she would pull it out to show people, probably to embarrass me. No. She was very proud of her son and would let people know it. She would tell me, “you are vary talented Mark, don't waste it”. Interesting how I have come back to what I liked as a child. Well maybe it never went away; it just needed to be rekindled. Below is some art that I did  between 1966-1967.


On the back of this art my mom wrote, "
Got "A" on this picture. It was put in
 the District office for showing". 
March 28, 1967. Hay! my first art show. 

All we did was wad up colored tissue paper and glue it to a piece of cardboard. I remember one time when I was in high school I asked her why she was saving all this stuff. She said, "Because it is special to me"! One day though, when I was about 12, I was joking around with her and made her so mad. As I proceeded to run out the front door laughing, thinking I was being smart to escape her wrath, she threw a piece of plaster art at me that I had made in school (being the closest thing she could grab). The pieces flew past me and disintegrated as they hit the ground; luckily she missed me. I turned around in shock at what she had done and asked, "Why did you through my art at me?!" In her sassy, pissed off voice she said, "WELL, THAT IS WHAT YOU GET FOR PISSING ME OFF"! Never make a woman mad, especially when they are around your art! Another very important lesson learned about women from my Mother! 

A homemade kite I made in the Cub Scouts in 1966. I remember when I got the chance to fly it for the first time at a Cub Scout outing; it got away from me and ended up in some very tall trees about a mile away. Everyone was trying to see who could get theirs the highest to win a prize. I was literally at the end of my string when it broke. I ran after it down the hill as fast as I could but I couldn’t catch the string. I came so close to grabbing it a couple of times but gave up when it sailed out of reach for good. I came back up the hill so dejected. Everyone felt so bad for me that one of the older kids let me fly his kite. It turned out to be a good day after all even though I lost mine. 

My Mom. This picture was taken by my Dad in the early 50's. She was a big influence in my life. She always knew how to get me to do the things I knew I should, in a good way though. She passed away December 27th, 1977 at the age of 49. Way too young! One of the things I miss the most about her is that she would come up to us for no reason at all, even when we were teenagers, and just give us a hug and say I love you. She could be very tender at times but when she got mad, boy you had better watch out. She had a short fuse! I was more afraid of her than my Dad when I got into trouble. She did not like to have to ask you to do something more than once. We would push the envelope once in awhile and pay the price for it. She was a very giving woman and always put us before herself. She encouraged and pushed all of us to stay in school and go to college because she didn't get the chance. She taught me a lot about relationships and what it means to stick with someone when things get tough. Not that my Dad was a terrible father or husband, he wasn’t. Trust me though, they did have their moments, but they always worked it out in the end. I miss her encouragement, especially at a time when I could really use it. But I know she would want me to step up and be the man that I need to be and she would expect me to be now. I remember the day my Mom passed away. The pastor of our church at the time came over and he said something to my Dad that has stuck with me, “She was a strong influence in the family and that will be missed". My Dad started to cry and said “yes!” I look forward to the day when I see her in heaven and she comes up to me and gives him a big hug and says, "I love you"!